People can use sea moss, often known as Irish moss, as a dietary supplement or add to food. With regular use, sea moss may provide some possible health benefits due to its natural abundance of vitamins and minerals.
It is collected for its carrageenan, a substance added to milk products like ice cream to thicken them. But it is now getting popular as a dietary supplement in the form of pills, powders, gels, and candies.
Let’s find out if sea moss gummies are effective and the potential health benefits it offers to consumers, and their side effects.
What is Sea Moss?
Irish moss, or Chondrus crispus, is a particular kind of algae or seaweed that is frequently referred to as sea moss. It is a spiky, edible plant that resembles other edible seaweeds like kombu, dulse, or wakame in certain ways.
Natural growths of sea moss can be found in tide pools and seas near rocky coastlines, such as those along the northern Atlantic Ocean. The common sea moss is a red seaweed, but it can also grow in other colors depending on conditions such as local climate and water temperatures.
Like other sea vegetables, sea moss is a natural source of iodine. According to studies published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, sea moss has roughly 47 mg of iodine per gram .
Although some businesses still collect and sell dried sea moss, it is more typical to find sea moss in dietary supplements. Sea moss may be found in supplements alone or in combination with other ingredients. The sea moss is often available as gel or powder.
Some businesses might use the thickening qualities of sea moss to produce goods like vitamin gummies or gels.
Sea Moss Gummies Potential Benefits
Sea moss gummies contain dry or powdered sea moss. They usually contain some coloring or flavoring to enhance their taste.
Given the identical chemical makeup of sea moss and other species of sea algae, it may offer similar benefits.
Scientists still need more data to support any health claims, though, as the sea moss study they have is currently limited.
Sea Moss Gummies for Weight Loss
One of sea moss’ popular health benefits is for those who are trying to lose weight. In a study where 78 participants who took 1000mg of red seaweed extract for 12 weeks lost significantly more body weight than those who received a placebo .
Furthermore, another study showed that a compound called fucoxanthin, found in most seaweeds, can help break down and metabolize fat .
It is still worth mentioning, though, that each seaweed species may have a different weight loss impact, and most studies focus on a single compound rather than sea moss’s overall effects.
Sea Moss for Gut Health
The prebiotic properties of sea moss may contribute to the improvement of gut microbial health. A study suggests that the rich properties of dietary fiber and carrageenan of sea moss may contribute to maintaining gut health by feeding the healthy bacteria found in the intestines .
Sea Moss for Cancer Prevention
Some algae contain substances that may help prevent or treat certain cancers. Fucoxanthin is abundant in some algae that may help prevent or treat certain risk factors for colorectal cancer, according to one study .
Having said that, the study placed a significant emphasis on high doses of fucoxanthin extracts. Additional studies on sea moss themselves may still require proving its overall efficacy.
Sea Moss for Muscle and Energy Recovery
The body may benefit from sea moss’ ability to reduce fatigue or assist in workout recovery. A study conducted involving 80 participants over the age of 40 with musculoskeletal symptoms was given certain types of sea moss. According to the study, participants experienced less fatigue, exhaustion, and pain. This can be due to the plant having a lot of total proteins and amino acids .
Sea Moss Gummies Side Effects
Due to the high iodine concentration of sea moss, excessive consumption is not advised [7 8]. Goiter, thyroid cancer, and hyper- or hypothyroidism are just a few of the conditions that can result from consuming too much iodine [9 10].
In addition to a burning sensation in the mouth, throat, and stomach, it can also result in fever, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea . Additionally, toxic metals like lead, mercury, and arsenic can form in seaweeds like sea moss, which could be harmful to human health.
Before incorporating it into your diet, talk to your doctor, and follow the label’s daily serving recommendations.
Bottomline: Benefits and Side Effects of Sea Moss Gummies
Similar to other types of seaweed, sea moss is a spiky marine vegetable. It might offer comparable medical benefits to other kinds of seaweed. It is typically harvested for its carrageenan, but it also has different concentrations of good minerals and antioxidants.
With more research, it will be easier to assess existing health claims made regarding sea moss, especially in humans. Always seek advice from your doctor before adopting sea moss to your diet.
Disclaimer: This article is only a guide. It does not substitute the advice given by your healthcare professional. Before making any health-related decision, consult your healthcare professional.
Editorial References And Fact-Checking
- Andersen, Noahsen, Rex, Florian-Sørensen, Mulvad,. (2019, April 1). Iodine in Edible Seaweed, Its Absorption, Dietary Use, and Relation to Iodine Nutrition in Arctic People. Journal of Medicinal Food. https://doi.org/10.1089/jmf.2018.0187
- Gómez-Zorita S, González-Arceo M, Trepiana J, Eseberri I, Fernández-Quintela A, Milton-Laskibar I, Aguirre L, González M, Portillo MP. Anti-Obesity Effects of Macroalgae. Nutrients. 2020 Aug 8;12(8):2378. doi: 10.3390/nu12082378. PMID: 32784488; PMCID: PMC7469045.
- Gammone MA, D’Orazio N. Anti-obesity activity of the marine carotenoid fucoxanthin. Mar Drugs. 2015 Apr 13;13(4):2196-214. doi: 10.3390/md13042196. PMID: 25871295; PMCID: PMC4413207.
- Liu J, Kandasamy S, Zhang J, Kirby CW, Karakach T, Hafting J, Critchley AT, Evans F, Prithiviraj B. Prebiotic effects of diet supplemented with the cultivated red seaweed Chondrus crispus or with fructo-oligo-saccharide on host immunity, colonic microbiota and gut microbial metabolites. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Aug 14;15:279. doi: 10.1186/s12906-015-0802-5. PMID: 26271359; PMCID: PMC4535385.
- Terasaki M, Kubota A, Kojima H, Maeda H, Miyashita K, Kawagoe C, Mutoh M, Tanaka T. Fucoxanthin and Colorectal Cancer Prevention. Cancers (Basel). 2021 May 14;13(10):2379. doi: 10.3390/cancers13102379. PMID: 34069132; PMCID: PMC8156579.
- Palmieri, B., Vadalà, M., & Laurino, C. (2018). Clinical effects of overwintered-stressed Chondrus Crispus and non-overwintered-stressed Chondrus crispus dietary supplementations. Asian Journal of Medical Sciences, 9(6), 7–13. https://doi.org/10.3126/ajms.v9i6.20978
- Andersen S, Noahsen P, Rex KF, Florian-Sørensen HC, Mulvad G. Iodine in Edible Seaweed, Its Absorption, Dietary Use, and Relation to Iodine Nutrition in Arctic People. J Med Food. 2019 Apr;22(4):421-426. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2018.0187. PMID: 30990756.
- Darias-Rosales J, Rubio C, Gutiérrez ÁJ, Paz S, Hardisson A. Risk assessment of iodine intake from the consumption of red seaweeds (Palmaria palmata and Chondrus crispus). Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2020 Dec;27(36):45737-45741. doi: 10.1007/s11356-020-10478-9. Epub 2020 Aug 15. PMID: 32803579.
- Circuncisão AR, Catarino MD, Cardoso SM, Silva AMS. Minerals from Macroalgae Origin: Health Benefits and Risks for Consumers. Mar Drugs. 2018 Oct 23;16(11):400. doi: 10.3390/md16110400. PMID: 30360515; PMCID: PMC6266857.
- Office of Dietary Supplements – Iodine. (n.d.). National Institutes of Health. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Iodine-Consumer/#h8
- Weiner ML. Food additive carrageenan: Part II: A critical review of carrageenan in vivo safety studies. Crit Rev Toxicol. 2014 Mar;44(3):244-69. doi: 10.3109/10408444.2013.861798. Epub 2014 Jan 28. PMID: 24467586.